Ladyjacks Come Up Short Against Lamar
A valiant effort by the seventh-seeded Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks women's basketball team came up just short against the third-seeded Lamar Lady Cardinals on Thursday afternoon, with SFA falling 69-65 in the quarterfinals of the Southland Conference Tournament at the Leonard E. Merrell Center.
Bearkats Close Out Ladyjacks Late
Despite Porsha Roberts ninth double-double of the season, the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks were unable to overcome for Sam Houston State Bearkats scoring in double-figures in a 76-68 loss Thursday evening at William R. Johnson Coliseum.
NACOGDOCHES, Texas – Southland Conference play begins this week as the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks will host Lamar at 6 p.m. Thursday at William R. Johnson Coliseum. Conference play this year will again consist of Thursday and Saturday women’s and men’s doubleheaders. Saturday’s game will be against Sam Houston State at 4 p.m.
The Ladyjacks are coming off an impressive 101-59 win over Texas A&M-Commerce on Monday. It marked the first time since Feb. 2, 2000 that SFA has reached the 100-point plateau when the Ladyjacks defeated Sam Houston State 100-60.
After opening league play on Thursday, SFA will play host to rival Sam Houston State on Saturday with the women’s tip set for 4 p.m. and the men’s game to follow.
Series History · SFA leads the all-time series with Lamar 49-12, but the Cardinals have held the advantage lately winning 9 of the last 11 contests.
· SFA leads the all-time series with Sam Houston State 55-10. The Bearkats have won 4 of the last 6 meetings, including both last season by an average of 11 points.
Scouting Lamar · The Cardinals are led by Dominque Edwards with 17.5 points per game. The forward is nearly averaging a double-double as she also leads Lamar with 9.0 rebounds. Edwards struggled, however, in Lamar’s last contest, scoring just 1 point and going 0-for-8 from the field. She did pull down 13 rebounds in a 67-64 loss against Rice on Sunday.
· Lamar point guard Gia Ayers leads the Southland Conference in assists as she is averaging 4.7 per game. Her 254 career assists rank 5th in school history as she continues to climb the list her senior season.
· The Cardinals are 5-6 on the year and have been a see-saw team. The average margin in Lamar’s losses is 14.7 points with the average margin in the team’s 5 victories being 13.4 points. Lamar has lost 3 games by 27 points, but its other 3 losses are by 1 point or 3 points.
Scouting Sam Houston State · The Bearkats are defending co-Southland Conference Champions. SHSU tied with Oral Roberts last season for the league title with a 13-5 record in Southland games. The Bearkats lost the Southland Conference Tournament championship game against Oral Roberts, 72-66. This season, the Bearkats were picked to finish 5th by both the league’s coaches and sports information directors.
· The Bearkats enter conference play at 5-6 and on a 4-game losing streak. Sam Houston State played games against back-to-back Big 12 Conference opponents, losing 78-46 at TCU and on the road to Texas by the score of 109-48.
· SHSU is led by the tandem of Angela Beadle and Jasmine Johnson. Beadle is one of the top posts in the league averaging 15.5 points and 9.5 rebounds. Johnson adds 12.9 points and 3.3 rebounds along with 4.6 assists that rank 2nd in the Southland.
Catching Up with SFA · The Ladyjacks are approaching their 900th win all-time as a program. SFA’s record is 894-389 dating back to the 1972-73 season. Other traditional powerhouses to recently reach the 900-win plateau are Texas, Stanford and Ohio State.
· SFA leads the Southland Conference in blocked shots per game with an average of 4.7. That mark is nearly a full block more than the No. 2 team in the conference and is currently tied for No. 36 in the nation. The Ladyjacks have posted 5 or more blocks 7 times this season. Against Arizona, the Ladyjacks swatted 8 blocks, which stands as the most in the Southland this season. The No. 2 mark also belongs to SFA, with 7 blocks against Henderson State. Abilene Christian has also had 7 blocks in a game this year.
· One reason why SFA is blocking so many balls again is junior center Porsha Roberts. Roberts is averaging 2.6 per game with 28 and is on pace for one of the best seasons in school history. At her current pace, Roberts could even break the career record at SFA before the end of the season. She is tied for 24th in the nation in blocks per game heading into Thursday’s action. Roberts also is posting 15.2 points per game to rank 7th in the Southland. Her 3.8 offensive rebounds rank 3rd in the conference.
· Freshman guard Taylor Ross has made an impact on SFA’s offense early this season. The newcomer leads the team in assists despite her limited time of running the point behind junior Brittney Matthew. Ross is averaging 3.0 assists per game and ranks 12th in the conference. She posted a new career-high of 6 assists in the win over Grambling State. Ross has posted at least 2 assists in every game this year except against Henderson State and reached 4 or more 5 times. Ross also has the No. 2 assist-turnover ratio in the league at 2.1. She is the only freshman in the league to be in the top 12 in assist-to-turnover, with 7 seniors on the list.
· Junior point guard Brittney Matthew posted a career-high 24 points in the win over Henderson State recently. Matthew was 10-of-14 from the field and added 5 assists to go with just 1 turnover. This season, Matthew ranks 14th in assists with 2.8 per game. With her and Taylor Ross’ 3.0 per game, it gives SFA 2 players in the Top 14 in the league. Matthew also is among the top free-throw shooters in the league at 78.9 percent. She ranks 7th in the league.
· SFA is ranked No. 2 in the Southland in scoring offense, averaging 68.8 points per game. The Ladyjacks trail Abilene Christian’s 76.1 points. SFA scored 101 points in its last contest to help boost its scoring average. It marked the first time since Feb. 2, 2000, that the Ladyjacks scored 100 or more points. It was the 43rd game in school history where the Ladyjacks reached the 100-point plateau.
· The Ladyjacks were chosen as the favorite to win the Southland Conference this season by the league’s coaches and sports information directors. SFA received 7 of the 12 first-place votes in both polls and was picked ahead of Oral Roberts. The Ladyjacks also had 2 players chosen to the Preseason All-Conference Teams. Porsha Roberts was a selection on the first team while Antionette Carter was voted to the second.